Beyond Words - Language Blog

Videos: Steven Pinker On Language, Thought, and Human Nature

A while back, we compiled five of the best TED talks on language that were available through TED’s website. Among the presentations was one by the popular linguist, Steven Pinker. Here’s the description we wrote about that talk: “Steven Pinker gives viewers a crash course in simple grammar and then proceeds to extrapolate on the not-so-simple topics of human intelligence, human language, and indirect human verbal communication. Most importantly, though, viewers get to hear Pinker tell jokes about guacamole.”

Pinker subsequently hit the speech/presentation circuit, and he’s elaborated on the themes and content of his talk. Below you’ll find footage of his original 17-minute TED talk, an hour presentation at The Royal Society for the Encouragement of Arts, Manufactures and Commerce (RSA), and an abbreviated animation made from the RSA lecture. Don’t miss the excellent animation! (Thanks to Patrick Appel at the Daily Dish for pointing us to it.)

Notice: These video contains very strong language and might not be considered suitable for young viewers.

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